Pakistan’s under-19s are enjoying far more success in New Zealand than the senior side after progressing to the semi-finals of the Under-19 Cricket World Cup after beating South Africa by three wickets in Christchurch on Wednesday.
South Africa were restricted to just 189-9 from their 50 overs after Pakistan won the toss and bowled first and Wandile Makwetu had to rescue their innings with 60 from 65 balls.
The Proteas battled back from being 43-4 in the 13th over but Pakistan, who were struggling in reply on 111-5, secured victory in the quarter-final at Hagley Oval after Ali Zaryab and Saad Khan’s 65-run partnership for the sixth wicket.
When Khan fell for 26, attempting a huge leg side heave for six, Pakistan needed just 14 from 27 balls and Zaryab steered them into the last four as he finished unbeaten on 74 from 111 balls.
There were some late jitters as they edged closer to their victory target of 190, but Zaryab held his nerve to knock off the required runs – helped by two late wides from South African spinner Kgaudise Molefe – as Pakistan joined Australia in the semi-finals with 13 balls to spare.
In the remaining two quarter-finals, New Zealand face Afghanistan in Christchurch on Thursday and India play Bangladesh in Queenstown on Friday.